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Archive for July, 2011

Funding the LIIs

Out of the blue (well to us anyway) House of Butter learnt that BAILii was teetering after it became clear that UK government sources of money were to become increasingly difficult to access as the (UK) coalition austerity belt tightened.

On 10 June we learnt from a number of UK LIS LAW posts and BAILii themselves that although they’d still receive UK government funds until March 2012 the organization would have to appeal for more funds from other parties.

Their funding page was updated with the following appeal notice a few days later

Why is BAILII appealing for funds?


. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Publishing

SC Bar Releases Ethics Opinion on Groupon

The South Carolina Bar Association just released an Ethics Advisory Opinion on the use of Groupon by SC lawyers.This interesting opinion dealt with the question of whether it is ethical for SC lawyers to use Groupon. The answer: Yes, but proceed with caution. Read SC Ethics Advisory Opinion 11-05 here. . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Marketing, Technology: Internet

Why Lawyers Should Upgrade to OS X Lion

If you’re a Mac-using lawyer, Apple’s recently released OS X Lion has a new feature that single-handedly makes the upgrade worth the $29 price of admission.

FileVault 2 enables whole-disk encryption for OS X Lion computers with just a few clicks of the mouse. Whole disk encryption ensures the contents of your drive are only readable when you provide a valid username / password combination to the operating system. This means your entire computer’s hard drive will be encrypted, and thus unreadable, should it fall into the wrong hands.

I consider whole disk encryption a best practice for all lawyers, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet, Technology: Office Technology

Aggravation Due to (Dis)aggregation…

There is a trend that is causing me great consternation, and I think its impact is only just starting to hurt our users and budgets. It is the decision being taken by some publishers of electronic versions of journals and law reports to remove their titles from the aggregators, such as Lexis or Westlaw, and to build their own platforms and then sell the titles /access separately to consumers at a rate they think is achievable.

I admit to my fair share of cynicism in relation to legal publishers; many – though thank goodness not all – have always seemed . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

New York Law School’s DRAGNET: Focused Legal Search

Sunday at the AALL 2011 conference in Philadelphia about 200 people attended the Cool Tools Cafe, a 75 minute session in which we could visit 5 minute demos of new tools at any of 17 tables. I managed to visit about half. I was particularly impressed by DRAGNET, a legal search tool from the New York Law School demonstrated by Terry Ballard, Assistant Director of Technical Services for Library Systems of Mendik Library.

DRAGNET (Database Resource Access Using Google’s New Electronic Technologies) is a search tool created with Google custom search which we have mentioned a few times over . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Technology: Internet

Using Social Media to Reduce Crime Risk

Anyone following me online right now knows that I’m currently on the West coast. Considering that last year I mentioned that social media can potentially affect home insurance premiums, why aren’t I being more surreptitious about my travels?

For me it probably has a lot to do with the net worth of all of my belongings at home being no more than a few hundred dollars on the Craigslist or Kijiji markets. But not everyone lives so sparse, and there are some emerging solutions to help mitigate the risk of robbery when people are posting their travels. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

Power Corrupts…

Corruption is likely very much near the front of your mind these days as the Murdoch/Tory/Scotland Yard revelations continue in Britain.

At the same time, the US GAO has revealed an astounding 16Trillion dollars in bailout funds (not 800 Billion, as previously reported), delivered in many cases to companies with strong, current ties to the granting agencies.

Meanwhile, Canada has decided to send Lai Changxing back to China for trial. His extensive (alleged) smuggling operation flourished under the aegis of Jia Qinglin,

…now the Communist Party’s fourth most senior leader, [he] was the province’s party chief. It was one

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology

The Friday Fillip: Tea, Earl Grey, Hot

I was a big fan of Star Trek: The Next Generation. But a couple of things irritated me about it. One was William Riker. The other was their insistence on having Captain Picard badger the replicator for Earl Grey tea.

I don’t hate Earl Grey, but I don’t like it either — who would want good tea adulterated with bergamot, apart from JLP, I mean? It’s… medicinal. Nevertheless, there seems to be the notion floating around this side of the Atlantic that Earl Grey is the best, the fanciest, or the finest tea, which, I guess, is why they programmed . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

You Might Like…

This is a post in a series to appear occasionally, setting out some articles that contributors at Slaw are reading and that you might find interesting. These tend to be longer than blog posts and shorter than books, just right for that stolen half hour on the weekend. It’s also likely that most of them won’t be about law — just right for etc.

Please let us have your recommendations for what we and our readers might like.

. . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: You might like...

Managing Your Personal Digital Profile

What do your clients find when they Google you?

The answer to that simple question lies at the heart of the personal digital profile concept. For most lawyers, your law firm website bio will be front and center in the results, and that is as it should be. While ensuring that particular page is prominent in search results for your name is a necessary step, my own view is that it is not a sufficient one. 

Lawyers are inherently predisposed to manage and minimize risk, and building out your digital profile is a strategy for doing just that when it . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing